It’s hard to believe that the holidays are right around the corner. Sometimes we get so wrapped up in the gifts and the stresses of the holidays that we forget what it is all supposed to be about: spending time with loved ones and caring for those around us. From shopping local to support local businesses to going green: this holiday season, keep the true meaning of Christmas in mind. In the words of the Grinch: “Maybe Christmas doesn’t come from a store, maybe Christmas perhaps, means a little bit more”.


Shop Local

It is always important to shop local year round, but especially during the holidays. Not only will you be getting a great gift for your loved ones, you will also be supporting local business owners and keeping small businesses alive and well in our area. Plus, you’ll save time and money shopping at home instead of driving all the way to big a mall hours away. These small businesses are the backbone of our area, keep them on your Christmas List this year!Remember Those Less Fortunate The holidays are a time of year filled with love and joy, but it is important to remember that it can also be a very hard time of year for some. Some ways to help the less fortunate right at home are to donate canned goods to local food banks, donate extra clothes to local charities such as the Hospital Foundation in Markdale or the BVO in Thornbury, or donate your time at local animal shelters such as the Georgian Triangle Humane Society. There are tons more charities in the area including the United Way, the Salvation Army and more. There are so many ways to help out this holiday season!


Go Green This Christmas

With so many stories in the news about climate change, it is time we all try to reduce our carbon footprint, and you can do so while still getting into the holiday spirit. Shopping local is a great way to reduce gas consumption. Gifts also don’t have to be brand new bought right from the store! Why not do some thrift shopping and get some great antiques and neat finds? Some great local antique stores and consignment shops include Danfield Antique Furnishings And Fine Art in Clarksburg, King’s Court Antique Market in Thornbury, Too Good to be Through in Collingwood, Bowles Hilltop Antiques who live in the area and have an online store on their Instagram and many more. Also, instead of buying new wrapping paper this year, try to use bags from last year or wrap things in newspaper. This paper is recyclable and another way to reuse!

Give Gifts From the Heart

Christmas gifts are never about how much money you spend, but it’s rather the thought that counts! Why not try making something from the heart? Bake some delicious Christmas cookies, knit a cozy scarf, paint a picture – you name it! These are gifts that show you have put tons of work and thought into them, plus they’re local and environmentally friendly! Not super crafty? You can also buy gifts from local bakeries, artists and craftspeople  – supporting local and the arts!

Spend time with Loved Ones

Christmas doesn’t need to be about giving fancy gifts – it should be about spending quality time with friends and family. Why not do some family day trips instead? There are tons of great activities for families happening in the area this holiday season. Spend the day at Blue Mountain Ski Resort: do some skiing, go skating at Woodview Mountaintop skating trail, go for a dip at the Plunge and finish off the evening with a nice dinner at one of the great restaurants and a stroll through the Blumination Dream lights trail. There are also tons of local arenas with public skating throughout the holidays, and so many fantastic local restaurants that are great for family outings. The possibilities are endless!